|Title||The biogeochemistry of phosphorous cycling and phosphorous availability along a desert soil chronosequence|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||1988|
|Authors||Lajtha K, Schlesinger WH|
|Keywords||article, articles, biogeochemistry, calcium carbonate, journal, journals, nutrient cycling, phosphorous cycling, soil, chronosequence, soil, phosphorous, soil, SEE biogeochemistry, weathering|
The biogeochemistry of the weathering, landscape movements, and chemical transformations of phosphorus and its availability to plants were examined in a chronosequence of soils developed from quartz monzonite alluvium in southern New Mexico. Total P in the soil profile decreased with increasing soil age and was removed from the ecosystem as readily as the most easily leachable bas cations. Although Ca-bound forms of P decreased with increasing soil age, Ca-P remained the single largest fraction of total P in all soils. In contrast, Fe- and Al-bound P was a very small percent of total P in all soils. There was little evidence for the stabilization of P by soil organic matter within this ecosystem; both soil organic P and microbial P represented very small pools of total soil P. Phosphorus availability, measured by in situ resin bags, was not well correlated with soil age or total soil P, and P concentrations in shrub tissues did not reflect changes in forms or total amounts of soil P. The biogeochemical cycle of P in this system differs sharply from that in a more mesic, forested system, where fixation by iron and aluminum oxides and biological activity play more dominant roles in the conservation of P within the ecosystem.